Frank Pierson, Screenwriter, Comments on Nature of Movies

In Memoriam: Frank Romer Pierson (May 12, 1925 – July 22, 2012)

Frank Pierson obituary: ‘Dog Day Afternoon’ screenwriter dies at 87 – Los Angeles Times

Screenwriter Frank Pierson was also the former President of the Writers Guild of America, West (WGAw) [1993-1995] and President of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS). [August 2001 - August 2005]

In his commencement address to the 2003 USC Film School Graduates, Pierson said:

“Movies are to our civilization what dreams and ideals are to individual lives: they express the mystery and help define the nature of who we are and what we are becoming. You must become writers with ideas and passion, who write with force and conviction; you must become directors who have minds enriched by your lives and not a library of stunts and special effects. Be critics centered in your feelings and ideas in the culture and society, not in comparing grosses and applauding computer generated ballets of violence.”

“Go and make a cinema and TV that express our history and our ideas, and that foster respect for a civilization in real danger of self destruction. Be decision makers with dreams and hopes instead of raw ambition. Tell stories that illuminate our times and our souls. That waken the sleeping angel inside the beast. We need this from you as we need clean drinking water and roads, green parks and libraries; it is as important as the breath of democratic life. Somehow we need to keep alive in our hearts the vision of community, shared interests and understanding of our neighbors needs, the sense of connection this fractionated society is losing. We need to recapture the spirit of Main Street. Up close. And personal.”

About John Raatz

Founder & Board Chairman of the Global Alliance for Transformational Entertainment (GATE). GATE is an evolving membership community of creative, business and technical professionals in entertainment and the media, and others who realize the vital and expanding role the media and entertainment play in creating our lives, and who aspire to consciously transform that process for the benefit of all.
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